Friday, March 29, 2024

Dusting off the blog

 Taking a video production break. 

Currently the morning of day 3 of the 777 simulator. 

For those that have never experienced airline training...flying a simulator is similar to learning to fly any plane. 

Day 1 sim was a "get to know the simulator" sim. We did a normal preflight. I went through all the buttons while the Captain loaded the FMS. This was a flight from JFK to BOS. Not realistic in a 777 but it's VERY rare to sit straight and level in a simulator. Simulator time is expensive. Straight and level teaches you nothing's rare. 

Normal pushback, start, taxi and takeoff. We did some basic FMS changes (direct to, intercept a route, and holding). 

There were some examples of high speed and low speed protections, bank angle protection and throttle wake up. Those are all ways the airplane protects the flight in case things aren't going normally.

We then did a little hand flying. Another about a's just a computer. I have never flown a simulator that was exactly like the actual airplane. They are close...but it's just a computer.

Things like winds are almost always constant. In the real world winds can change drastically during an approach as topography changes which changes the velocity of wind. Anyways we did a few visual approaches. I took my Airbus 321 landing technique and used it for the 777. At 50 feet I thought about flaring...but didn't 40 feet I thought "hmmm....sure looks like maybe I should flare....No!" When 30 feet came my brain told my right hand to get ready to 20 feet it was a gentle 10 feet...a little more....then hold Smoother than I's a computer.

All of that took 4 hours. 

Day 2 was more training based and less situation based.

We started in BOS with engines running already pushed back in snowy conditions. We did a few rejected takeoffs. The Captain is a former 737 Captain. He knows Boeing but also has muscle memory from the last 11 years as a 737 Captain. The reject on a 777 is different than the 737. The procedure we use here is to idle the thrust levers, disconnect auto throttles, full reverse, pull speed brake handle and stop the plane. We did both high speed and low speed rejects. 

Once off the ground we did NON-ILS approaches. In the real world almost every approach is an ILS. In the training environment we do a lot of NON-ILS. This can be a VOR, RNP, LOC, GPS etc...anything without a traditional land based glideslope. 

The way a NON-ILS is done in a 777 is nothing like an Airbus. Way more work to get the same result. It's not hard....just different. The Airbus seems more cohesive while the 777 is more...."hey pilot....figure it out and land". This is not about physically flying but getting the automation to do what is expected. After several types of approaches we each did an approach to landing stall, windshear and missed approaches. 

Going missed in a 777 is stupid easy....even compared to the Airbus. To initiate a go-around I just press TOGA on the thrust levers, pitch up, call "flaps 20"......Captain states positive rate.....I say "gear up!". At 1000 feet I press VNAV or Flight Level Change...that's it. By comparison going around in a CRJ was much more complicated. 

Almost everything in the 777 is easier compared to my previous 5 type ratings. So much of the time I feel like I should be doing something....but there is nothing to do. Some of this comes from experience in knowing what needs to be done regardless of plane but  a good chunk of it is....automation.

We finished the required task early and had time for one V1 Cut each. The V1 cut is the most over taught maneuver in my opinion. 

A V1 Cut is having an engine fail right at the V1 (go/no go speed) and continuing the takeoff. 

The 777 has a TAC....Thrust Asymmetry Compensation. On the ground when the TAC senses an engine failure it quickly adds rudder trim to compensate. The system doesn't fully compensate on the ground just so the pilot can still "feel" the failure...but it makes it very easy. My first V1 cut in most aircraft is a busy and humbling experience. In the 777.....I looked like a pro. 

More on that next time. 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for coming back to the blog. I have always enjoyed reading it. Good luck on the 777 Sim training.


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